For years we’ve been peeling bananas and composting the peels (after using them in a quick natural fertilizer first, of course). But they’re actually edible, and offer many of the same nutrients as the banana itself.

Many cultures have been eating banana peels for years. You can find recipes for banana peel curries or banana peel chutneys online and in cookbooks. So yes, add them to the list of fruits that have surprisingly edible peels (looking at you, kiwi).

According to research, banana peel flour (which is derived, of course, from banana peels) showed that the peels themselves are rich in nutrients like essential amino acids and fiber. Another study, conducted in test tubes, found that less ripe peels were also rich in antioxidants. If you are going to eat the peels, it’s worth picking up organic bananas to minimize any pesticides on the peel—though you’ll still want to scrub it.

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